A hot oil treatment is a type of body or hair massage therapy for relaxation and healing purposes. For the body, the hot oil is used to loosen and release the internal impurities, which are then flushed out and eliminated through the urinary and digestive tract. For this reason it is important to drink plenty of water after a treatment.
The oil used should be organic, cold-pressed oil. It is important to note that the skin is an organ and will metabolize anything that comes in contact with it, so only use pure products should be used. Sesame oil is a good option for hot oil treatments. For people with a lot of heat and skin or muscle inflammation, a more cooling oil, such as olive or coconut oil, may be used. This is especially true for those with sensitive skin.
To prepare for a treatment, the cold-pressed, organic oil should be placed in a stainless steel pan. The person offering the treatment should heat the oil to a temperature just under the boiling point and before it starts smoking. He or she should then let the oil stand until it reaches a comfortable temperature.
For best results, it is good to have two technicians work on the person. This should be done in unison so that the body part on each side of the body is being massaged simultaneously. It is important for the technicians to make long strides on the limbs and back while making circular movements on the joints.
Organs should be massaged in the direction they flow. Pressure should not be placed on the heart, and only a very slight touch in a gentle circular motion should ever be considered. Often, a systematic flow of oil will be poured over the forehead repeatedly to create a sense of relaxation. This ayurvedic process, known as shirodhara, is also thought to balance the right and left hemispheres of the brain.
The head should be covered with oil from the top of the forehead to the nape of the neck. Ears should be a special focus as they represent the kidneys according to ancient Chinese, Egyptian, and Indian massage therapy techniques. The feet and hands should also be given special attention as all the meridians can be influenced.
Some hot oil treatment programs include an herbal oil enema to complete the elimination of the toxins. It is thought that by loosening and releasing the toxins, the body is prepared to continue that process and elimination is easy and natural. The techniques may also help to release gallstones. For this reason, people who receive treatment should spend the rest of the day spent sipping warm water and only eating healthy, simple foods while getting plenty of rest.
For hot oil hair treatments, people typically use either olive or coconut oil, as excess heat on the head can cause hair loss. The massage should be continuous and in large circular motions performed by each finger. Special attention should be paid to the neck area, as this will release the entire head.
Once the massage is complete, the hair should be wrapped with a cotton cloth and the oil should be allowed to remain on the head for 30 minutes to two hours. A heating lamp can be used if the person becomes cold. At the end of the treatment, the hair should be shampooed with a mild, natural shampoo. By adding herbs, the hot oil hair treatments are an excellent stimulant for the head and conditioning of the hair.